Drought Assistant

Help could soon be on the way for Alabama farmers who've been devastated by the recent drought. The U.S Department of Agriculture plans to distribute $16-million dollars across the nation and more than $1 million of that money will come to Alabama.

Dry and brittle is the only way to describe the corn crop, which farmers say is a total loss.

The peanut crop is about 50/50, while cotton is okay.

In the state of Alabama and across the board, we have the drought to thank for these conditions.

"It's one of the worse that I've seen. This year and last year are totally horrible in row crop producers," says Willie Durr with the Houston County Cooperative Extension Office.

Just recently, Governor Riley announced 15 more Alabama counties are experiencing a drought emergency, bringing the total to 53 counties.

So to counterattack the dry weather and other natural disasters, the USDA will give a little more than $1 million dollars to area farmers.

"Every little bit helps. I think at this point and time, but this is initially what they are receiving," says Durr.

Under what's called the Emergency Conservation Program or ECP, only those farmers whose income doesn't exceed a certain level will be given the money.

Also, under existing regulations, each person will be limited to $200,000 per disaster.

For more information on where the money is being distributed check out www.fsa.usda.gov. Also, check with your local farming agency to see when you can sign up.

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